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Islam justifies its existence through the failure of Judaism

A successful Jewish State, especially one successful militarily, is a theological threat to Moslems everywhere

His right derived from time immemorial in his
family, to enter Jewish houses, and take toll or
contributions at any time without giving account.
-A "Muslim in Hebron," as reported
by James Finn, British Consul in
Jerusalem, 1858

I have learned with horror of the
atrocious acts committed by bodies of ruthless
and blood-thirsty evil-doers, of savage murders
perpetrated upon defenseless members of the
Jewish population, regardless of age or sex ...
acts of unspeakable savagery ....
-J. R. Chancellor, High Commissioner and
Commander-in-Chief in Palestine, September 1, 1929

Islam has a lot to fear from Judaism. Not because Judaism is in any way antagonistic to Islam, but rather that Islam justifies its existence because of the failure of the Jews -- in particular their failure militarily over Rome.  To have a successful Jewish State, especially one successful militarily, is a theological threat to Moslems everywhere.

The Church had similar replacement theology, blaming the Jews for the death of Christ.  "Replacement theology" was understood to be rooted in the cursing of the Jews (the cursing of the field of Judas), and the reason behind their national misfortune.  But the de facto success of the State of Israel, and disdain for centuries of anti-Semitism within the Church, led to profound theological changes.  In 1965, the Catholic Nostra Aetate, stated clearly and plainly 1) The Jews as a whole were no longer ... responsible for the death of Christ, and, 2) Above all, they were no longer considered "rejected by God" or "cursed."  Fortunately the Church had an alternative "Grafted on" Theology to fall back on, where the Church is a extension, rather than a replacement, of Judaism.

Islam does not particularly blame the Jews for death of Christ, rather specifically for its failure militarily over Rome during the lifetime of The Prophet Mohammed, and generally for Judaism's failure to become a successful world religion.  The de facto success of the State of Israel, causes similar problems within Islam, but this time there is no theological alternative.  The right and proof of the legitimacy of Islam was originally the Jews misfortune at the hands of Rome and later Byzantium.  When these empires disappeared, Islam itself took on this role.  The Jews lowly status was no longer a fact of circumstance, but an Islamic right.

Before proceeding to the evidence and indications of the "systems" of immigration and their crucial consequence in Palestine, it is important to look at the conditions under which the Palestinian Jews lived during the generations prior to the "new," late-nineteenth-century Jewish settlements.

In order to assess accurately the responsibility for the plight of the Arab refugees, the true role must be seen of the Jews in Palestine among the many ethnic groups constituting the Muslim inhabitants who are all called -- and for the sake of convenience will be called here -- Arabs.

Although the same as in Arab countries in some fundamental respects, the relationships in the Holy Land developed special qualitative differences. Those attitudes were the residual of a long tradition of intrinsic prejudice inflamed by cynical political manipulation. That tradition has been perpetuated for generations-and for more than three decades at the cost of the well-being of some of the Arab refugee-emigres themselves.

The violence that the PLO's Yasser Arafat and others now claim was "only begun against Jews with the 1948 rebirth of Israel" -- "Palestinian" terrorism -- was actually a critical factor in the early developments that instigated the pivotal population conditions in Palestine. In their Holy Land, the Jews, as well as Christians, suffered long from harsh discrimination, persecution, and pogroms. According to the British Consulate report in 1839, the Jew's life was not "much above" that of a dog.[1]

The inverting of facts -- turnspeak * -- has had the propaganda effect of perpetuating the false claim of "displaced" and "terrorized" Arabs in the Jewish-settled area of Palestine until the current time-long after the charge had been disproved by investigations. In fact, as following chapters will show, it was the Jews who were displaced by Arabs-the Arab immigrant flocks would migrate into the Jewish areas of development, filling the places that the Jews were clearing for other Jews -- on land designated at that very time as the mandated "Jewish Homeland."

[*Tumspeak-the cynical inverting or distorting of facts, which, for example, makes the victim appear as culprit.]

Those few "Arab effendi" families-like the Husseinis and the Nashashibis and the Khalidis-who had been dispossessing and then continuing to exploit the hapless peasant-migrant in underpopulated Palestine would become threatened by the spectacle of dhimmi Jews living on the land as equals, tilling their own soil and granting previously unknown benefits to the Arabic-speaking non-Jewish worker. The Jews would undoubtedly upset the "sweets of office," which had been accruing to the effendis. Thousands of peasant-migrants would be emigrating to reap the better wages, health benefits, and improvements of the Jewish communities. Although the effendis would charge scalper's prices for land they sold to the Jews, at the same time they would lose thousands of their former debtors who saw an escape from the stranglehold of usury and corruption prevalent in Palestine for generations.

Yet perhaps most galling of all to effendi leadership was the Jew who would settle the land. This was not the dhimmi Jew--cowering to survive, as in Arab lands -- but a person who commanded equal treatment. The outrage which that insistence created, among those weaned on the tradition of Muslim supremacy, would infect the multi-ethnic Arabic-speaking Muslim workers of Palestine as well: for centuries Jews had been objects to oppress and despise.

As a Muslim in Hebron retorted when he was confronted with his theft and vandalism of Jews in 1858, "his right derived from time immemorial in his family, to enter Jewish houses, and take toll or contributions at any time without giving account."[2] This attitude and its prevalence in Palestine cannot be overlooked. It is perhaps the most powerful factor in the Middle East conflict today and certainly the core of the "Palestinian" question -- the true "heart of the matter."

From the beginning of Turkish rule in the sixteenth century, the infidel dhimma code of oppressions against nonbelievers was maintained in Palestine.  The humiliation was a given; the degree of harshness of injunctions against Jews depended on the whim of the ruler, local as well as the lord of the empire. Among the constants of dhimma restrictions in the Holy Land:

Jews had to pass Muslims on their left side, because that was the side of Satan. They had to yield the right of way, step off the pavement to let the Arab go by, above all make sure not to touch him in passing, because this could provoke a violent response. In the same way, anything that. reminded the Muslim of the presence of alternative religions, any demonstration of alternative forms of worship, had to be avoided so synagogues were placed in humble, hidden places, and the sounds of Jewish prayer carefully muted.[19]

1. Italian daily Corriere della Sera. But this declaration came too late. From the Middle Ages until the modern era, it would have been extremely useful, since Christian anti-Semitism was in fact at the root of the persecution of Jews in Europe. Undoubtedly, had it been pronounced before the Holocaust, Hitler would have been far more limited in his implementation of the "Final Solution." Pius XII would probably have acted differently regarding the extermination of the Jews. It is also true, however, that in the considerably de-Christianized western world of today, the theology of Nostra Aetate has practically no effect on the general public. 

This page was produced by Joseph E. Katz
Middle Eastern Political and Religious History Analyst 
Brooklyn, New York 
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Source: "From Time Immemorial" by Joan Peters, 1984
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Portions Copyright © 1984 Joan Peters, Portions Copyright © 2001 Joseph Katz
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